Jose Feliciano has harbored a burning love for Elvis since he was a child. The pioneering crossover artist has performed Presley’s songs throughout the years, and in 2012, he released a tribute album, The King.
During his lifetime, Elvis ignited Latin American kids’ desire to rock n’ roll, and his love ballads have naturally found their way into the repertoire of Latin music’s romantic crooners. As fans everywhere remember Elvis this week on the 38th anniversary of his death, we pay tribute with some of our favorite Elvis covers by Latin artists.
Jose Feliciano, “All Shook Up”
Jose Feliciano may be best known for covering The Doors (“Light My Fire”), but throughout his career, he’s often performed Elvis material at his concerts. Captured here at a show in 1978, Feliciano plays his Latin cool take on “All Shook Up,” even slipping a little Spanish into the song.
Julio Iglesias, “Can’t Help Falling in love”
Latin music’s king of romance takes the Presley classic “Can’t Help Falling in Love” very,very, personally in this televised performance.
Diego Luna, “Can’t Help Falling in Love”
More recently, Mexican actor Diego Luna performed an acoustic version of “Falling in Love” in the animated film “The Book of Life.” Providing the voice of the Manolo, who wears a traje de luces, Luna sings the familiar tune almost as a lullaby. His Latin lover accent (“Fools Rosh In”) makes the song all the more seductive.
Café Quijano, “Ardiente Amor”
This awesome take on “Burning Love” by Spain’s Café Quijano was included in the soundtrack of the Spanish version of Lilo & Stitch.
Los Teen Tops, “El Rock de la Carcel”
Elvis’ rebellious sound was a big influence for the pioneering Mexican rock group Los Teen Tops, who had a hit with their 1960 single “El Rock de la Carcel” (“Jailhouse Rock), from an album that included covers of “King Creole” and Little Richard’s “Tutti Frutti.”
Enrique Guzman, “El Rock de la Carcel”
Teen Tops leader Enrique Guzman later recorded “El Rock de la Carcel” again as a solo artist. In this video from 1976, the father of Alejandra Guzman leads a campy ball and chain routine that looks more like an aerobics workout than a rock n’ roll rebel cry. Que viva Elvis!